Adobe "vs" Aviary

In effect, we're a third-party evangelist for Adobe. Every time somebody uses our software, they are marveling at what Flash is capable of.

Different Markets

From a business perspective there is also no competition because our target markets are completely different. Adobe targets the niche creative professional market with a suite that is robust and comprehensive (a niche group that can afford to spend hundreds/thousands of dollars on software). Aviary targets the creative hobbyist with a suite that is streamlined and accessible (a larger group with less direct capital to spend, per person).

What about Adobe's initial forays into the web app market? Different market as well - those are completely consumer focused tools. Adobe Premiere Express and Adobe Photoshop Express are both deliberately lightweight offerings that bear no resemblance to the powerful brands of their desktop counterparts. My guess is there is some fear that by offering something more advanced that would appeal to hobbyist users they would cannibalize their high-end software sales... but I think that's unlikely. Web apps, (in their current state), cannot compete with professional desktop software used for professional publishing purposes.

Web-apps fill a different role. They are better suited for enhancing collaborative work flow during the pre-production phase, than desktop software. But it cannot replace desktop software for actual production. It's complementary to the Pro market.

Upselling & Combating Piracy

As for the hobbyist market, there is a direct gain for Pro-providers like Adobe, by other companies offering hobbyist-targeted web apps: Namely lowering instances of piracy.

With viable and affordable Photoshop light alternatives available, there should be a steep decline in piracy amongst hobbyist users - the largest group of software pirates (from my experience in the space). Why would that matter to Adobe? Simple. Once software is stolen, it generally remains so. A hobbyist who stole Photoshop to try it out for fun is not going to go out and purchase a full license once he/she is ready to go pro. (It's a lot easier to rationalize away a crime that's already been committed).

But someone who used legal web-apps and learned advanced concepts that exist in Pro software (i.e. layer-based editing) will eventually want to upgrade to pro software when they are ready for production-level work. If they haven't pirated Photoshop yet, they will be more likely to purchase it once they reach this level of expertise. And Aviary would fill an important role as the broker of that purchase.]]